Senior diplomats from the United States (US) and China will meet on Sunday (25/7) at a time of increasing tension between Washington and Beijing.
The US State Department said Wednesday that Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, the number two US diplomat, will meet Secretary of State Wang Yi and others in Tianjin, China. Sherman’s trip is part of an Asia trip that includes visits to Japan, South Korea, Mongolia and Oman.
“In the context of a complex, challenging, dynamic relationship, we believe in the importance of maintaining open lines of communication between high-ranking officials, and that includes at times such as the case with the PRC (People’s Republic of China), and ongoing competition,” a Ministry spokesman said. Overseas Ned Price at a press conference on Wednesday (21/7).
Sherman’s meeting with Chinese officials came as the Biden administration accused China of inciting a large-scale hacking of Microsoft Exchange’s email server software. On Monday (19/7), the US charged four Chinese nationals with trying to steal US trade secrets, technology and disease research. China rejects the accusations.
US officials say Beijing’s aggressive actions in the South China Sea are high on the agenda. Washington has dismissed China’s “unlawful” maritime claims at sea, accusing China of continuing to “coerce and intimidate Southeast Asian nations” and threaten freedom of navigation in the critical global waterway. [lt/em]